There is a great privilege in serving men and women that are "active visionaries". People that have a vision and are acting daily to fulfill and grow their vision.
In my twenty-five year career I have served a couple of active visionaries. In the mid 90's I watched Marocs Rodriguez step beyond the realms of the radio world into on-line data aggregation through pop mail long before you thought about setting up your gmail account.
I now serve Al Boenker who was the first insurance agent to take credit cards in the U.S. and the first agent to use a computer to generate rates. He always embraces technology to advance the organization, but more than this, he helps people catch his vision and make it their own.
People like Marcos and Al are few and far between.
I am not at all ashamed to serve others, but I can tell you I never heard in my education from elementary school through college that there was anything other than working for someone else.
These two men had a family member that taught them something crucial, "critical thinking" and "doing".
My education was like yours. I was brought up to do a function, not to critically think and run with a vision. Critical thinking is something I learned to apply later in life.
Seth Godin speaks to the failures of education system:
“The current (educational) structure, which seeks low-cost uniformity that meets minimum standards, is killing our economy, our culture, and us.” (Stop Stealing Dreams, Seth Godin)
“If all we do with these tools is teach compliance and consumption, that's all we're going to get. School can and must do more than train the factory workers of tomorrow.” (Stop Stealing Dreams, Seth Godin)
In the tech world we now have shining examples of how young people can rocket to the top with a simple vision. Examples include those familiar to you like: Facebook, Google, Twitter, Napster and countless others.
Technology old and new has always touched all businesses in some fashion and it remains a tool for the young and old to plug into their passions and visions.
"Technology has helped expedite the process. With mobile technology, cloud computing and the proliferation of free (and nearly free) online tools for communication and collaboration, the barriers to starting a business that plagued my generation have all but disappeared today." ("Why Millennials Should Become Entrepreneurs Now, Mike Pugh,01.16.14, Entrepreneur Magazine)
I am watching the "New Boomers" with great anticipation. Especially my own children who grew up with us teaching, "Don't let other people think for you. Do the hard work of thinking and doing."
I bump into young people not yet in the workforce who bring a greater understanding than Gen X. I find many late Gen Xers have lots of dreams, but are people of little action.
New Boomers give me hope. Hope of micro-business growth that helps not only them, but others. Hope of a generation that works with passion and not just for a paycheck. Hope for a generation that does not seek to be absorbed into a corporation, but lead from where they are and with what the know. I'm optomistic about them being future owners, "active visionaries".
Let me suggest a read for you that my friend Mark Hall provided me. Its Seth Godins "Stop Stealing Dreams".
Teach your children to think well. Challenge their thoughts. Expect them to have honest answers to honest questions.
Let me end with words from Tim Keller. His book "Every Good Endeavor" is a great investment of your time.
“A job is a vocation only if someone else calls you to do it for them rather than for yourself. And so our work can be a calling only if it is reimagined as a mission of service to something beyond merely our own interests. Thinking of work mainly as a means of self-fulfillment and self-realization slowly crushes a person.” (Every Good Endeavor, Tim Keller)
And if you have a moment, consider using my kids services :) They own businesses.